Monthly Archives: February 2014

Ironman – Budget – Action#007

Draft Budget IronmanSince I am planning to ask for a Sponsor, it makes sense that I take a stab at a budget.

As you can see from my initial estimates, it will be about a $20K project. Of course most budgets turn out to be woefully inadequate so I should probably double everything, right?

In case you have trouble reading the scanned image from my notebook, the Budget Items Include:
Race Fees, Bike upgrade, Screen Printing & Bike decals (for sponsors), Swim training location, Transportation, Hotels, Performance Food & Supplements, Running Shoes, Food & Misc. (Race/trips), Paper/pins for Cranes, Planning Calendar, Support team at races.

Other items I thought of since I scanned that page include: Video crew (so I can document it and possibly use it for marketing, Upgraded clothing (since wetsuits might not be allowed at Kona and I may need something different from what I have) and a new hydration system (for the bike).


What do you think?

What am I missing?  Should there be more activities / events / budget items related to, and for the benefit of, sponsors?

Speaking of sponsors, is the budget itemized sufficiently that a company can look at the listing and choose to sponsor a particular part of the project?  What can I do to entice sponsors to support the full project?

Budget / Sponsor Ideas?

Obviously I don’t have all the answers and I would welcome anyone who has experience signing up sponsors for individuals or events or even charity fundraising.  Any ideas you have to improve this budget or gain sponsors would be appreciated.  Leave you comments below !


Ironman – Sponsor List – Action#006

Draft Sponsor ListSince the completion of an Ironman triathlon in Kona will involve lots of different costs, I am going to get a sponsor (or two or three).

Notice that I didn’t say “I am going to TRY to get a sponsor.”  I want my words to reflect a positive anticipation … and I hate it when people say “try”.  It usually means that they are not committed to making it happen.

My other “pet peeve” (that I have to fight within myself as much as anyone) is “self-centered thinking” that says someone would sponsor my efforts “just because I need money.” This is one of those ineffective ways of thinking that we all have to battle in the marketing & business world. “People should buy my product because I need the money” doesn’t work very well as a tagline for a product or service so you have to think about what the sponsor (or customer) wants instead of what you want from the customer.

Why should a Sponsor sign up?

Here are some reasons I came up with.  Which one do you think will resonate with sponsors?  Which one would convince YOU to become a sponsor?  Leave a comment below with your own ideas.

1) A first-time Ironman athlete is more relate-able to the general public than the professional athletes so sponsoring me could be like Jared from the Subway commercials.  [Note: anyone have contacts at Subway?]

2) Baby boomers are retiring in record numbers and even though I am on the tail end of that generation, my gray hair (what’s left) means that I can be an inspiration to millions of people who dream of finishing an endurance event like a triathlon or marathon.  Plus, free exposure on where I will be featured during training could be of value to a sponsor targeting the Baby Boomer demographic.  [Who should I target?  Retirement homes?  P&G must have products for older adults, right?]

3)  I could offer exposure for a company’s brand on  For a charity or business, this could be a great opportunity to get in on the ground floor before TheWishBuilder becomes a worldwide phenomenon.  Motivational speakers might be a good target since many of them talk about goal setting and inspiring their audience to achieve great things.

4)  “Dave is just so darn adorable that everyone will want be a sponsor.”
[Mom, I can’t put that.  Well, okay… for you.]

5) My faithful sidekick, Sampson, and I have spent so much time at Starbucks you would think that they would name a table after him at least.  As an added bonus, they could sponsor Sampson as well and get prominent logo placement on his collar and warm-up jacket.  Other pet-friendly companies might be interested such as Petco or a pet food provider such as Costco (where we get Sampson’s food).

Other reasons to Sponsor?

What other reasons can we use to get a sponsor to sign up?  Please leave your ideas in the comments below.  If you want to sponsor this project, you can leave a note below and I will respond via email.

Ironman – Action List page 2

Even though the Ironman Action List page below is still “in process”, I am posting it here because of two things I have noticed so far…

1.   I only made it to 27 Actions before I hit my first “brick wall”.  In reality, it wasn’t much of a brick wall, but I had exhausted all the initial ideas I could come up with in a couple hours.  The good news is that my mind eventually started generating new ideas and I was on my way down the list.  I have not gotten to the point (yet) where I will use some of the brainstorming tools.

Ironman Action List page 2

2.  There are some basic action steps that are probably going to be part of every 1000 Cranes Action List such as # 33 Get Paper for Cranes and #34 Get pins for mounting Action Steps on wall.  There are probably more and once I’m further along, I will probably consolidate them into an Action List Kickstarter package so you will have a few action steps already on your list and fewer you will have to come up with on your own.





Ironman – Action List page 1


This is the start of the brainstorming of an Action List for my Ironman project.  I am using process and I will us this blog to let you know what I learn along the way.  I will also post my action steps for your review.

Here is a picture of the first page of actions that I came up with for my Ironman project using process.


I noticed immediately that there were some actions that will need to be expanded into smaller steps such as an action step for each workout.  I will be marking them as I go along.

I also found that when I started to write an action description that included the word “and” that I was probably better off breaking it into two different actions.


What’s next?

I set up my bulletin board and calendar in my bedroom so that it will be the first thing I see in the morning and the last thing I see at night.  I will post a picture of it if anyone is interested.

More Action List pages will follow on this blog along with pictures of some of the pages / notes I took as part of completing an action.  (Still need to get my 1000 sheets of paper so I can fold some cranes for the actions I’ve already finished!)


I need your help

As you follow my creation of the Action Steps (they will be posted on this blog) you may see something that I’m missing.  Please leave a comment with your ideas.  Or, if you can help me accomplish an action step, such as any of the ones around Sponsors, please let me know as well.

TheWishBuilder community  is stronger together than any one of us are alone.  Your support, encouragement and ideas are definitely appreciated and if you believe in karma, your good deeds will come back to you !


Ironman – WishList


The first part of TheWishBuilder process is to figure out your goal or wish.  Since most adults aren’t experienced “wishers”, I’ve found it helpful to write out your complete wishlist and then decide what is the single wish where you want to focus your attention.

The key when making your wishlist is to not hold anything back.  Write down everything that you can think of that you might want or do or… whatever.  Some say that “the sky is the limit” but now that space travel is being privatized, are there really any limits?

For my project using TheWishBuilder process, I thought about what I could wish for that would give me personal gratification.  What would provide a legacy for me after I was gone.  How might I have an impact on the world?

On the more mundane side of things I thought about how I might satisfy or improve on the basics … food, health, money.

What could I wish for that would be Life Changing?  What “Once-in-a-lifetime events did I want to experience?  Who did I want to experience them with?

I explored other occupations which I might enjoy and that might challenge me to achieve more.

I thought about what I wanted to create in my life and, more importantly, with my life.  We all have a limited number of minutes and we have to make the most of what we are given.

Decision Time …

After listing all the wishes in the picture above, it was time to make a decision.  Which would be my ONE WISH… Completing an Ironman Triathlon !  2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike and a 26.2 mile marathon… and the pinnacle Ironman race is the World Championship in Kona, Hawaii, so that is my wish.

Tune in to future blog posts to see how my mental focus training (step 2 of TheWishBuilder process) and my action plan (step 3) come together.


The key to getting your wish is to focus on a single outcome so nothing will get in the way of your efforts to achieve it.  Like I say, “If you want all, you get none.  Choosing one gets it done.”

Why THIS one wish?

That’s an even better question.  If I was smart, I would concentrate on making a million dollars and I am sure my bank account would be better for it, but I chose this wish for two reasons.  First, I wanted to elevate the importance of my physical health for quite a while.  I used to run marathons years ago (mostly walked them, really) and while I have improved on my eating habits recently, I still needed to exercise more consistently.  Plus, I know me… if there is a race on the calendar, I am much more likely to get out there and put in the miles.

My second reason for choosing to complete an Ironman Triathlon is to see if I could actually follow through with TheWishBuilder process in its entirety given that I knew there would be financial and potentially health obstacles in the way.   Could I take something that I was passionate about [Hearing the words as I cross the finish line, “Dave Wheeler, You Are An Ironman!”] and still keep the rest of my life on track?  It seems like it will be a good test for the process don’t you think?


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